By Kevin McGuire, SVP Product


You may have heard us say that we “make the smartphone smarter”. That’s because content discovery on smartphones is stunted and the way to fix it is to change how the device works. Device-centric discovery (DCD) solutions, like our Firstly Mobile Platform, does just that. But we are hardly the only DCD solution in market.

This four-part blog series is designed to help you understand what DCD is, why it matters, why consumers love it, and what it means for the wireless industry..

In our first part, we covered the basics – defining DCD, giving examples of existing DCD solutions, and revealing the market leaders. In our second part, we take a look at why telecom players should care about DCD.


As we discussed in part 1, there are several DCD solutions already on the market with new ones emerging constantly. So what exactly makes DCD so trendy right now? Three key reasons:

  • The Frictionless Trend – Consumers want things easier and quicker. We’ve seen friction removed from payment systems (PayPal, Venmo), transportation (Uber, Lyft), retail (Amazon), and even dating (Tinder, Bumble) that have transformed industries. Content is no different. With tons of apps out there, having the device find and surface content for the user makes DCD extremely consumer-friendly.
  • Old Smartphone Logic – The so-called “smart”-phone has some pretty dated and dumb logic (Last In First Out) when it comes to the unlock process. The user simply sees the last app they were in (which is often their launcher/home screen app) – neither of which are particularly useful. Recent research shows that the first app is currently closed immediately over 50% of the time. A “smarter” phone would give you something useful instead.
  • Unlimited Data – As wireless carriers have rolled out unlimited data plans, consumers phone behavior has changed. Now with the shackles off their mobile usage, their phone usage has become “Appnostic” – unlocking their phone with no particular app in mind. A recent report found that almost 90% of people display Appnostic behavior. In those “Appnostic” moments, having content one touch away becomes very desirable.


Even with being a nascent innovation, DCD has already provided several benefits for consumers and carriers alike. We’ll be covering all of these benefits in parts 3 and 4 of this blog series – but some of the key ones are:

  • New Revenue Opportunity – Consumers have embraced that their content feeds are going to have advertising. Facebook, Google, Twitter, Taboola/Outbrain, and many others have found creative ways to place advertising within content feeds so that it is not distracting to the user – in some cases even providing entertainment to the user.
  • Happier Subscribers – Consider the adoption rate for solutions like Apple News, Android widgets, and Bixby. Solutions that reduce the friction in finding and enjoying content will always find a market of users, and DCD has been no exception. Offering these solutions will certainly boost subscriber satisfaction.
  • Better 5G Rollout – One of the inarguable effects of 5G will be “choice overload”. People’s phones are already oversaturated with app options. As networks get faster and more things get connected, the sheer amount of potential destinations on the smartphone is going to skyrocket. DCD’s ability to frictionlessly present content and messaging can not only simplify discovery by streamlining choices, it can also boost awareness, understanding and adoption of related 5G services.
  • Support Carrier Strategic Goals – In addition to helping carriers promote 5G services, and creating new revenues, carriers who have embraced DCD have already seen it fulfill a variety of other strategic goals, including: driving consumption of a carrier’s owned and operated content and media; support of carrier-wide branding efforts; implementation of targeted CRM messages


In our next part, we’ll dig deeper into the consumer-friendly aspects of DCD and how it has changed mobile behavior.